Squirrel knocks out power to 3,000 in downtown Asheville, N.C.


A North Carolina utility company said a squirrel was to blame for a power outage that affected more than 3,000 customers.

Duke Energy said more than 3,000 customers in the downtown area of Asheville, including multiple businesses and government buildings, lost power Wednesday morning when a squirrel came into contact with some wiring.

Officials said power was restored just after 8:30 a.m. Wednesday.

The outage led to facilities including Buncombe County’s downtown office delaying their Wednesday opening until the late morning.

The Minnesota Valley Electric Cooperative said 4,000 customers lost power earlier in June when a squirrel came into contact with substation equipment. The outage lasted for about a half hour.